Our lives are profoundly influenced by the health of our body, as well as by the urban and architectural environment that surrounds us. Eastern philosophy – as in the case of Feng Shui – has repeatedly dealt with the theme of the relationship between furniture, buildings and mental and physical well-being of man, while, if we look to the West, there are more and more projects that aim not only to the aesthetic aspect, but also to the functional aspect, understood as the idea that architecture should take care of individuals and their needs, creating spaces in which they can meet and act.
It is a kind of approach that we could define as almost “social” and that finds its maximum expression in those works dedicated to public activities for the daily life of many people, such as schools, churches, recreation centers, universities and so on. These are in fact the buildings that should be the most bio-compatible: in terms of suitability for human life, to encourage growth, education and even healing.
For example, the San Luca hospital, home of the Italian Auxologic Institute of Milan, was designed following the philosophy that the place where the patient is located plays a fundamental role in his/her recovery. A principle that is reflected in the choice to “protect” the construction from the noise and smog of the surrounding road arteries, surrounding the structure with a shield of zintek® that, thanks to its slate grey color and the message of reliability and safety embodied by its metal entity, reinforces the image of the protective barrier.
The same material but a different function for the new boats and the water buses in the historic center of Venice. For a city that moves on water, boarding points and ticket offices are an integral part of daily life, and choosing to cover them with zintek® means making them more comfortable for those who pass by.
Another case of social architecture are churches, where the choice of shape and materials is key to the state of mind of those who go there. Examples of religious buildings, in which the choice of zintek® has contributed to transmitting the idea of resistance and duration over time, are the restoration of the church of San Michele Arcangelo in San Michele di Piave (TV) and the construction of the new liturgical classroom for the church of San Lorenzo martyr in Cividale del Friuli (UD).
Perfect demonstrations of how a material can embody ambitions, wishes and even needs of the human soul.